BALYKCHY, Sept. 18 (ChinaMil) -- The opening ceremony of the "Peace Mission-2016" joint anti-terrorism military exercise of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) was held in the Edelweiss training area in Balykchy of Kyrgyzstan on the morning of September 15, local time.
Colonel R. Mukambetov, general director of the "Peace Mission-2016" and director of the Combat Training Bureau of General Staff Headquarters of Kyrgyzstan, announced the official opening of the joint military exercise at 10 am, Sept. 15, local time.
During the ceremony, Colonel R. Mukambetov and deputy directors of the exercise from other four SCO member countries each delivered a speech. A march-past by troops from each country participating in the "Peace Mission-2016" exercise was conducted in the end of the ceremony.
Major General Deng Yu'en, Chinese deputy director of the "Peace Mission-2016", pointed out that this joint military exercise is an essential component in deepening the defense and security cooperation of the SCO.
The exercise is, an important platform to show the solidarity and mutual trust among SCO member states, and a significant exercise held under the increasingly complex international and regional anti-terrorism situation, Maj. Gen. Deng added.
Deng also indicated this military exercise is of great significance to promoting cooperation among SCO member states, jointly coping with regional terrorist threats and combating the "three evil forces" (terrorism, separatism and extremism).
It should be noted that the "Peace Mission" joint anti-terrorism military exercise is held for the first time on the territory of Kyrgyzstan since the SCO establishment.
The exercise will feature in "joint anti-terrorism actions in mountainous areas" and will be conducted in two stages, including joint command and decision and actual troops operations.
A total of more than 1,100 troops will participate in this joint exercise, involving more than 200 pieces of weaponry including fighter jets, helicopters, tankers, infantry fighting vehicles and self-propelled artillery.